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Sunday, October 8 • 8:30am - 10:00am
Hardware/Software and other Forms of Scholarship

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A Commodore in the Library? Retro Tech as Digital Scholarship “Special Collections”
Daniel Johnson, Alex Papson (University of Notre Dame)

Digital scholarship generates such excitement, that the physical equipment used to produce it is often taken for granted. Insofar as this neglect signals lowered barriers to computer access it is a positive development. However, as media scholars have argued, material circumstances shape cultural production, and computation is no exception. Unless an understanding of earlier technologies is preserved, students and researchers will lose an important part of the story that their data can tell. “A Commodore in the Library?” explores how academic libraries might provide retro-tech as a service akin to rare books – granting access to older technology in a controlled environment for patrons who need “the real thing.” Early experiences at Notre Dame suggest how even a minimum investment in older media and hardware can yield exciting cross-departmental collaboration. This panel projects an interconnected future by looking squarely to the past.


Daniel Johnson

English and Digital Humanities Librarian, University of Notre Dame

Alex Papson

Alexander Papson is the head of the digital production unit for the University of Notre Dame Hesburgh Libraries. He oversees the digitization and digital forensics efforts for the library system. Alex is also the metadata and digital projects librarian and does outreach services... Read More →

Sunday October 8, 2017 8:30am - 10:00am
Center Room
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